Report Looks At Business Vacancy Crisis In Santa Barbara

Aug 1, 2019

An oversupply of space, and above market rental rates are some of the concerns identified in a new report about the surge in business vacancies in downtown Santa Barbara. A new report commissioned by the City of Santa Barbara identifies a number of issues.

The report contends the city doesn’t have a business friendly reputation, and that the permitting process for new businesses is expensive. And, it says vagrants are hurting the image of State Street.

Recommendations include changing the zoning and permitting process to make it more flexible, and business friendly. The report calls identifying specialty retail categories which might be a good fit in the area, and creating streamlined permits for popup events.

It also suggests that the city should encourage UC Santa Barbara to open a satellite campus downtown.